The European Parliament's October vote on next year's EU budget marked the beginning of the final stage of negotiations. With the agreement on the size and priorities of the 2012 budget, reached on the evening of 18 November, it took a concrete step towards a final agreement. The EP and Council agreed that the 2012 budget should rise 1.86%.
The so-called conciliation procedure, which runs 21 days and is the last stage in the process of adopting the yearly EU budget, began 1 November. The agreement reached got a final stamp of approval from the EP on 1 December and was then signed into law by EP President Jerzy Buzek.
Read on to find out more about the whole process.